Adam (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) When Adam Freedman — a straight, cis teen from Piedmont, California — goes to stay with his older sister Casey in Brooklyn, he fantasizes about a summer of freedom, new friends, and falling in love. He's in for a surprise. It's 2006 and Casey has thrown herself into NYC's lesbian and trans activist scene—marriage equality marches, L Word-watching parties, BDSM sex clubs, and trans rights protests. Adam tags along, having fun in places he'd never have expected, but he's surrounded by lesbians, and it seems like the last thing he'll find is a girlfriend. That is, until he meets Gillian. Adam is soon hopelessly, desperately in love...only there's just one small problem. Gillian thinks he's a trans man.

Ariel Schrag's scathingly funny and poignant debut novel puts a fresh spin on questions of love, attraction, self-definition, and what it means to be part of a community.


Also available as an audiobook

“As a transwoman and lesbian, realistic depictions of these kinds of conversations are incredibly powerful. There’s so little accurate and honest representation for queer youth–and, frankly, queer adults–that to find a work that spoke to me so much was revelatory… Adam is funny, and truthful, and unflinching, and sexy, and harsh, and fair. It’s almost everything I could ask for in an LGBT novel right now.” — Avery Edison, The Toast

“[Adam] is, in its way, an almost perfect comedy… [It] represents a giant step forward from the times when trans people were portrayed as objects of pity, or serial killers, or symbols of dreamlike weirdness, when we were portrayed at all.” – Stephanie Burt, The New Yorker

“Compulsively readable, Adam sometimes seems like a YA novel, only with way more explicit sex. The book is also philosophical, presenting at its core, a question about gender, desire, and subjectivity: is sexual identity defined by who you have sex with, or who you think you’re having sex with…The gimmick at the center of Adam is a good one, and the complicated issues it provokes are profound.” — Hillary Chute, Bookforum

Adam is a needed correlative to didactic queer fiction that treats its protagonists with unexamined reverence… Like the trans men in Adam, my gender is both real and hard-won, but also that most incendiary of descriptors, the one no one wants to apply to themselves: trendy… Most importantly, Adam allows us to say the unsayable… It allows readers to acknowledge the culturally privileged place affluent, white trans men occupy without denying the emotional struggles it took to get us there.” – Claire Harlan Orsi, The New Inquiry

 “Schrag’s writing is sharp and stylish but also effortlessly graceful; you almost don’t notice how great her sentences are because they flow straight into your brain, situating themselves there like some better, funnier version of your own thoughts.” — Emily Gould, The Millions

“I read [Adam] as hilariously accurate, thought-provoking satire, that echoed upsetting aspects of trans communities that I have witnessed, and explored questions around identities and disclosure that I had never considered.” — Kyle Lukoff, American Library Association’s Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Round Table

All content © 2021 Ariel Schrag